SEAFDEC/AQD hosts Regional Sea Cucumber Roadshow

By Nyra Armada

The Southeast Asian Fisheries and Development Center Aquaculture Department (SEAFDEC/AQD) hosted the Regional Sea Cucumber Roadshow 2024 West Visayas Session on 13–14 June 2024 at Tigbauan Main Station.

The two-day event, supported by the Australian Center for International Agriculture Research (ACIAR), featured the latest developments in sea cucumber fisheries and management, with participation from various academic institutions, regional government agencies, and local government units.

Attendees – who hailed not only from Western Visayas but also from Cebu, Marinduque, Palawan, and Misamis Oriental – explored new sea cucumber culture methods, developed best practices for sea cucumber aquaculture and ocean rearing, and discussed partnerships with various agencies and organizations to expand sandfish farming to new localities.

This was the second leg of the roadshow, following the first session held in Bolinao, Pangasinan, from 8 to 11 May 2024.

SEAFDEC/AQD Chief Dan Baliao highlighted the significance of the event, stating, “This is a good opportunity to raise awareness about sea cucumbers among Filipinos and how to sustainably farm them, given their potential in international markets.”

Key lectures included topics such as “Overview of Sea Cucumber Ecology, Fisheries, and Trade,” “Current Knowledge & Practices – Hatchery, Nursery, Grow-out of Sandfish,” “Integrated Systems, Cluster Production and Linkages (Luzon Highlights),” “Community-friendly Approaches (East Visayas Highlights),” and “NICER Program on Sea Cucumbers (Mindanao Highlights).”

The second day featured workshops aimed at identifying sea cucumber status (resources, research, and projects) by area, identifying gaps and needs (technical, funding, permits, partners), and exploring potential collaborations, projects, assistance, etc. Open forums allowed participants to ask questions, share thoughts, and engage in discussions.

The event is part of an ACIAR-funded project on community-based sea cucumber production that aims to enhance the skills of sea cucumber farmers in aquaculture and resource management through research and community development in the Philippines.

By adopting practical sea cucumber culture methods, coastal communities can generate new income opportunities and diversified livelihoods, particularly for women.

By advancing sandfish culture technologies to support expansion to new sites and ensure stable market accessibility, the project aims to achieve significant ecological, economic, and social impacts across the Philippines.


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